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Negative Effects of Ballet Dancing on Anatomy & Physiology

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Tara Drappo

on 14 December 2012

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Transcript of Negative Effects of Ballet Dancing on Anatomy & Physiology

By Tara Gerdon-Drappo Negative Effects of Ballet Dancing
on Anatomy & Physiology Stress on the Body Dancers are at a higher risk for developing eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. Dancers may be unaware of or may choose to ignore the fact that an emaciated dancer will not have the strength required for ballet and is at a higher risk for injuries and long-term health problems. Inadequate nutrition in adolescent females has been linked to development of scoliosis, due to decreased estrogen production and subsequent reduced bone density.
In an effort to stay thin, ballet dancers may take up cigarette smoking. In a survey of 300 professional dancers, 40% were tobacco smokers in contrast with the Center for Disease Control average of 24% of American women and 29% of American men aged 18–34. Smoking can contribute to developing cancers, and other respiratory health problems.
Ankles also tend to get twisted and sprained and the pointe shoe ribbons can cut off circulation
Everting the foot when the dancer adopts a turned out position can lead to tendonitis
Repeated jumping and landing may irritate the sesamoids causing sesamoiditis
Stress fractures are frequently reported with the most common site in the second metatarsal Injuries Many dance movements, and ballet techniques, such as the turnout of the hips and rising on the toes (en pointe), test the limits of the range of movement of the human body. Dance movements can place stress on the body when not performed correctly; even if perfect form is used. Over-repetition can degrade quality of performance and the body itself. Eighty percent of professional dancers will be injured in some way during their careers; 50 percent of dancers from large ballet companies and 40 percent from small companies will miss performances due to injury.
The practice of not "plieing" (bending one's knees deeply) adequately after landing each jump may result in shin splints or knee injuries. Overwork and poor occupational health and safety conditions, a (non-sprung) hard floor, a cold studio or theater, or dancing without sufficient warm up also increase risk of injury.
Damage may also result from having a student perform movements for which they are not prepared, care must be taken that the student is not "pushed" inappropriately. A dancer put en pointe at an age where his or her bones have not completely ossified may develop permanent damage; even past the point of ossification, ankle injuries can result if a dancer goes en pointe without sufficient strength.
The Feet Pointe shoes contain a hard resin block in the toe box, which can cramp and crush the toes, causing blisters, warts, hangnails, corns, scuffs, cuts, scrapes, athlete's foot, and ingrown and split toe nails. They also exacerbate bunions and other foot deformities.
Ballet shoes offer the feet little cushioning, leaving the lower leg and foot to absorb the full impact of movement
This puts increased pressure on the knees, hip, and back, which over time can increase a person's chance of developing arthritis. The lack of support offered by the shoe can also lead to painful muscle strain
May suffer arthritic changes on the first metatarsal phalangeal joint or hallux rigidus
Pressure to the Achilles tendon at the posterior aspect of the malleoli Gel pads, toe spacers, plasters and tape can all help relieve pressure points.
You should also do daily calf stretches in order to keep muscles supple and prevent cramping.
On your non-ballet days try to wear a supportive shoe like a trainer or lace-up brogue to give your feet a break. Other Complications: Impingement syndrome is caused when repeated pointing of the foot which compresses the lower tibia and the upper calcaneum, thus flattening the posterior tubercle (os trigonum). Another consequence of repeatedly pointing the foot is the development of traction osteophytes at the front of the ankle. These can break off forming loose bodies in the front of the ankle joint that lead to anterior impingement when the foot is dorsiflexed. The ankle tendons are often overused and sometime crepitus occurs. The most vulnerable is the flexor hallucis longus. This tendon plantarflexes the big toe and helps the dancer get up onto pointe. Overuse of this tendon can produce a nodule which can be felt moving with the tendon just behind the medial malleolus. The tendo achilles often involved with a calcaneal bursa and this is caused by tying the ribbons too tight. Anterior compartment syndrome (or shin splints) may also be found with tibial stress fracture. Works Cited http://podiatry.curtin.edu.au/ballet.html#cowboy
http://fashion.telegraph.co.uk/news-features/TMG8313907/Ballet-style-shoes-can-harm-your-feet.html How to Help Prevent Damage to Your Body
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